How to apply make-up: 5 tips and tricks every woman should know

I’m constantly surprised at some of my girlfriends’ reactions to me talking about the most basic make-up tips, as if I had just made some big revelation to them – which probably means the most “basic” tips I rely on are not really that basic after all.

These five tips have helped improve my make-up throughout the years and even make the application process more efficient, so I hope you’ll find them just as useful.

1. Use emollient, long-lasting lipstick as blusher

Make-up hack: use your lipstick as blush [photo credit: Liyana Aris]
Make-up hack: use your lipstick as blusher [photo credit: Liyana Aris |]

You might be surprised to know how many make-up products can pull off double-duty. A good creamy lipstick can give you that desirable natural “pinched” look that a cream blusher does. I found this to be quite the helpful trick when you need to go for a sudden short trip that needs light (and quick) packing.

2. Wiggle mascara at the very base of eyelashes

Wiggle your mascara [photo credit: Liyana Aris]
Wiggle your mascara [photo credit: Liyana Aris |]

Do your lashes tend to droop after applying mascara? That might be because you didn’t coat the base enough, which results in the heavier tip to surrender to gravity. Wiggling your mascara wand at the base of your lashes will help your eyelashes look fuller, thicker, and will stay curled up all day long.

3. Prime spots before concealing with eye primer

Conceal spots with eye primer [photo credit: Liyana Aris]
Conceal spots with eye primer [photo credit: Liyana Aris |]

I have combination to oily skin which means make-up products tend to slip off my face easier than those with dry to normal skin. I found that prepping spots and bumps with a thin layer of eye primer ensures my concealer sticks around longer. Just pat the tiniest amount on a spot, smooth it out on the surface until it’s virtually invisible, and layer concealer on top like you usually do.

4. Colour-correct using lipstick underneath concealer

Colour-correct using lipstick [photo credit: Liyana Aris]
Colour-correct using lipstick [photo credit: Liyana Aris |]

Some lipsticks can be quite the triple threat. In an attempt to combat my dark under eye circles on a budget without purchasing another product, I turned to orange lipstick as a substitute for colour-corrector, which works surprisingly well. Orange hues work best on tan to dark skin tones like mine while peachy ones are better suited for lighter skin. Mix a small amount of lipstick with your concealer or apply a thin layer under your eye before concealing; less is best! Again, emollient and long-lasting lipsticks are best for this.

5. Line entire lips with lip liner

Use lip liner on entire lips [photo credit: Liyana Aris]
Use lip liner on entire lips [photo credit: Liyana Aris |]

I honestly thought this was a universally-known make-up tip but turns out I was wrong, as I found myself explaining this trick to two surprised girlfriends. I do know plenty of women who are not interested in having a full face of make-up even on a fun weekend night but I don’t know anyone who can say no to having a little lipstick on, so this is definitely the handiest tip to know! Line the rim of your lips with liner, then colour in your entire lips with the liner before applying lipstick. You’ll see your perfect pout lasting a lot longer—even after having dinner and drinks.